Navigation Links
Nanoparticles improve solar collection efficiency
Date:4/5/2011

Washington, D.C. (April 5, 2011) -- Using minute graphite particles 1000 times smaller than the width of a human hair, mechanical engineers at Arizona State University hope to boost the efficiencyand profitabilityof solar power plants.

Photovoltaic (PV) solar panels are popping up more and more on rooftops, but they're not necessarily the best solar power solution. "The big limitation of PV panels is that they can use only a fraction of the sunlight that hits them, and the rest just turns into heat, which actually hurts the performance of the panels," explains Robert Taylor, a graduate student in mechanical engineering at Arizona State University.

An alternative that can make use of all of the sunlight, including light PVs can't use, is the solar thermal collector. The purpose of these collectorswhich take the form of dishes, panels, evacuated tubes, towers, and moreis to collect heat that can then be used to boil water to make steam, for example, which drives a turbine to create electricity.

To further increase the efficiency of solar collectors, Taylor and his colleagues have mixed nanoparticlesparticles a billionth of a meter in sizeinto the heat-transfer oils normally used in solar thermal power plants. The researchers chose graphite nanoparticles, in part because they are black and therefore absorb light very well, making them efficient heat collectors. In laboratory tests with small dish collectors, Taylor and his colleagues found that nanoparticles increased heat-collection efficiency by up to 10 percent. "We estimate that this could mean up to $3.5 million dollars per year more revenue for a 100 megawatt solar power plant," he says.

What's more, Taylor adds, graphite nanoparticles "are cheap"less than $1 per grambut with 100 grams of nanoparticles providing the same heat-collecting surface area as an entire football field. "It might also be possible to filter out nanoparticles of soot, which have similar absorbing potential, from coal power plants for use in solar systems," he says. "I think that idea is particularly attractive: using a pollutant to harvest clean, green solar energy."


'/>"/>

Contact: Charles E. Blue
cblue@aip.org
301-209-3091
American Institute of Physics
Source:Eurekalert

Related biology technology :

1. New instrument keeps an eye on nanoparticles
2. Special sugar, nanoparticles combine to detect cholera toxin
3. Targeted Gold Nanoparticles and Noninvasive Radio Fields Attacking One of the Deadliest and Least Curable Types of Cancer: Pancreatic Carcinoma
4. Tecnalia investigates nanoparticles for soil remediation
5. Scientist chronicle nanoparticles journey from the lungs into the body
6. Trouble with sputter? Blame giant nanoparticles
7. Gold nanoparticles enrich everyday products
8. Magnetic fields drive drug-loaded nanoparticles to reduce blood vessel blockages in an animal study
9. Study shows that size affects structure of hollow nanoparticles
10. Engineers produce how-to guide for controlling the structure of nanoparticles
11. New discovery reveals fate of nanoparticles in human cells
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:6/27/2016)... BOSTON , June 27, 2016   Ginkgo ... biology to industrial engineering, was today awarded as ... a selection of the world,s most innovative companies. ... at scale for the real world in the ... organism engineers work directly with customers including Fortune ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... ... ... While the majority of commercial spectrophotometers and fluorometers use the z-dimension of 8.5 ... end machines that use the more unconventional z-dimension of 20mm. Z-dimension or ... the cuvette holder. , FireflySci has developed several Agilent flow cell product lines ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... (PRWEB) , ... June 23, 2016 , ... ... is pleased to announce the launch of their brand, UP4™ Probiotics, into Target ... over 35 years, is proud to add Target to its list of well-respected ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... 23, 2016 A person commits a crime, and ... to track the criminal down. An outbreak of ... Drug Administration (FDA) uses DNA evidence to track down the ... Sound far-fetched? It,s not. The FDA has increasingly used a ... of foodborne illnesses. Put as simply as possible, whole genome ...
Breaking Biology Technology:
(Date:6/22/2016)... WASHINGTON , June 22, 2016 On ... highly-anticipated call to industry to share solutions for the ... by U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP), explains that ... nationals are departing the United States ... criminals, and to defeat imposters. Logo - ...
(Date:6/9/2016)... attendance control systems is proud to announce the introduction of fingerprint attendance control software, ... employees are actually signing in, and to even control the opening of doors. ... ... ... Photo - http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20160609/377487 ...
(Date:6/2/2016)... --  The Weather Company , an IBM Business (NYSE: ... in which consumers will be able to interact with IBM ... voice or text and receive relevant information about the product ... have long sought an advertising solution that can create a ... and valuable; and can scale across millions of interactions and ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):